Much like his contemporary, Malibu Moon, this Kentucky-bred was not destined for a long racing career. And like that same contemporary, he transformed into a respected stallion.
But whereas Malibu Moon would be based back East, California became the home of Tribal Rule.
Racing exclusively in California, the Storm Cat colt competed four times. He did well for himself, capturing two wins and two seconds between visits to Santa Anita, Del Mar and Hollywood Park, but his career was cut short due to injury.
But a bigger career awaited him, and it came in California to boot.
Tribal Rule moved into stallion duty, and it did not take long for him to produce successful runners. Among his first big winners was Georgie Boy, a multiple graded stakes winner who was named Champion Cal-bred Two-Year-Old Male in 2007. Able to win as a sprinter and router, Georgie Boy showed laudable consistency, finishing in the top three in all but just one start.
Another early horse of Tribal Rule's was Rush With Thunder. A winner of several claiming races, Rush With Thunder managed to find some success at higher levels. In addition to being a minor stakes winner, he also placed in some graded events in five seasons of competition.
Those first few years also brought Tribesman, who won more than a dozen races between the Northern and Southern California circuits as well as at some tracks out of state. Like Georgie Boy, he found a nice amount of stakes success, although in Tribesman's case, it came at the black-type level. Alphie's Bet won some graded stakes and placed in others as he traveled around the Southern California circuit, and Red Outlaw was a multiple black-type stakes champion while winning at all three of the big Southland tracks.
Tribal Rule also sired successful female horses. Heleonor Rugby showed an abundance of consistency as she won races while she made stops in the North and South, and she also turned into a multiple stakes winner. Tribal Gal won or placed in stakes all across California as well as Arizona, doing well as a sprinter. Spanish Queen had a short career, but she still managed to become a multiple graded stakes winner, with the 2015 Grade I American Oaks serving as her biggest victory.
Among Tribal Rule's successful horses in the second part of the 2010s were Sunday Rules, a listed and black-types stakes champion; Spirit Rules, the 2015 Donald Valpredo California Cup Sprint champion; Marckie's Water, the 2019 Grade II Charles Whitthingham Stakes winner; and Pee Wee Reese, who won several races while finding a course he really liked in the Santa Anita Hillside Turf. He won a couple of stakes there, including the 2018 Joe Hernandez and 2019 Sensational Star Stakes. You can also add Brandothebartender to that list, for he is a stakes winner, too.
All of the progeny listed are just a small sample of what Tribal Rule contributed as a stallion. He sired scores of winners, several of them going on to the stakes level later on. What's more, he sired progeny that ran well on turf, dirt or synthetic courses, and Tribal Rule has had his share of stakes winners, too.
He showed great class as a stallion, and he made longevity a hallmark of his career. More than one Tribal Rule offspring enjoyed long careers, and Tribal Rule himself was a sire for years. Both of those facts make him a respected stallion, and though he passed in 2014, Tribal Rule is always going to be remembered for his plethora of success as a in the breeding shed along with being one of the top California stallions of his era.